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Harvard Business Review: Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable?

Harvard Business Review_ Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable
Harvard Business Review_ Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable

Part of WiFi (What I Find Interesting) Wednesday.


Harvard Business Review: Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable?

Listen to Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable? from Harvard Business Review Cold Call Podcast from September 2020.

Simon Cohen, founder and CEO of Henco, shares how he reinforces the idea of happiness mean in the workplace.

What does “happy” even mean, to Simon Cohen? The answer is: overall, you’re at peace.

The podcast was easy to listen to and learn more about how to build a company that values its employees and how they find peace at work.

The philosophy itself goes down to taking care of people. Thinking about people as humans and not machines. Asking them how they feel, how they are, how are their feelings, what’s inside their minds, their bodies. If they’re sleeping enough, if they’re working out enough, if they’re eating healthy. If all those things combined, they will just thrive at work, they will do a great job at the office.

Growing a Manufacturing Company with a Social Mission Cold Call

Nehemiah Manufacturing turned a social mission to hire convicted felons into a competitive advantage, with decreased turnover and higher staff loyalty. Harvard Business School professor Michael Chu discusses the challenges and opportunities of combining profit with social impact in his case, “Nehemiah Mfg. Co.: Providing a Second Chance.”
  1. Growing a Manufacturing Company with a Social Mission
  2. Can Entrepreneurs Make Mobile Voting Easy and Secure?

Continue listening to Is Happiness at Work Really Attainable? from Harvard Business Review Cold Call Podcast from September 2020.


Medium.com: Why Your Brain Is So Foggy

Read Why Your Brain Is So Foggy by Dana Smith, from Medium.com, September 8, 2020.

Like everyone trying to live through 2020, I have found that doing any sort of work seems more complicated than before. There are neurological reasons, as much as there are sociological reasons, why we may feel like we’re living in a fog. Dr. Dana Smith, a neurobiologist and journalist, shares ways to tackle the fogginess we may feel.

Try this to lift the fog

These changes in the brain are obviously not ideal, so you want to try and lower your stress levels, stat. One relaxation technique that conveniently doubles as a sleep aid is the meditative body scan. The following technique is from Dr. Jud Brewer, (you can also listen to his guided meditation here).

Bring your awareness to the physical sensations of the toes in your left foot. If you can’t feel anything, wiggle your toes for a moment, then notice what you feel. Are they warm or cold? Moist or dry? Simply be curious about what your toes feel like right now. Then invite your awareness to the bottom of your left foot and notice what it feels like.

Repeat this practice by moving your awareness through your body as you scan up your left and then right leg, and through your entire body. You can do this in about 10 minutes, or longer if you’d like.

Brewer says, “The body scan works because you’re not trying to force your mind not to think or your body to calm down — which you can’t do anyway — but instead, it naturally draws your attention and energy away from your worry thinking, and grounds you in your body.” I feel better already.

Continue reading Why Your Brain Is So Foggy by Dana Smith, from Medium.com, September 8, 2020.


Inside Higher Ed: Campus Life and Caregiving

Read Campus Life and Caregiving by Amy Armenia, Sharon Carnahan and Alice Davidson, from Inside Higher Ed, September 14, 2020.

I have watched and read the updates from my friends and former colleagues who have children living at home, while they try to balance the needs of the students on their own campuses or workplaces. And the struggle is palpable. I am loathed to say that we’re in unprecedented times – because history has told us that it is always women who will be expected to make sacrifices for the family to run. But what can we do to better support caregivers, and women especially, during these ‘unprecedented’ times?

Amy Armenia, Sharon Carnahan and Alice Davidson are three faculty colleagues at Rollins College, a small liberal arts college in Florida, who looked into the best practices for accommodating higher education employees with care responsibilities during the COVID-19 crisis.

Best Practices for Supporting Caregivers working in Higher Education

Below are some of the best practices from their report:

Make Time and Space for Care

  • Press pause on nonessential service obligations. Curriculum reform is important, but it should not be a priority this year. When we continue with nonessential service and meetings, we disadvantage colleagues who have to take time away from the core responsibilities of teaching and research to do care work.
  • Adjust faculty and staff times of contract obligation. Many of us are on nine- or 10-month schedules. When possible, shift those schedules to give leave or shorter hours when needed, rather than next summer.

Help Us All Help Each Other

  • Facilitate cooperative care efforts among faculty and staff members. Those might include, for example, a pair and share childcare system with one or two other families or a shared bank of part-time caregivers.
  • Recruit faculty and staff members without current caregiving needs to help. They may be interested in virtually engaging with their colleagues’ young children for an hour or two each week — reading books or teaching a second-grade math lesson — in order to give caregivers a break.

Reallocate Resources for Caregivers

  • Make care subsidies available. Repurpose funds where possible from faculty research, travel and other budget lines that will go unused during the pandemic.

Provide Optional Extensions for Tenure and Evaluation Clocks

  • Provide optional one-year extensions of tenure-review clocks. Make clear at the appropriate dean or provost level that the typical timetables and standards for performance reviews are not appropriate at this time.
  • Suspend or modify student evaluations of teaching. Also suspend expectations for research productivity — not just for faculty members who cannot conduct their research at the moment, but also for those who need to dedicate their time to the highest-priority tasks while balancing care demands.

Amplify the Voices of Caregivers

  • Speak out. Encourage leaders to acknowledge caregiving as a legitimate problem — and to show appreciation for the way that many of us have continued to serve our colleges despite these challenges.

Continue reading Campus Life and Caregiving by Amy Armenia, Sharon Carnahan and Alice Davidson, from Inside Higher Ed, September 14, 2020.


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